Monthly Archives: December 2013

Latest Fitbit update turns your iPhone 5S into a fitness tracker

The Fitbit iPhone app received a notable update today that brings basic tracking features directly to the iPhone 5S without the need of one of Fitbit’s tracking watches.

Version 2.1 of the app introduces the new “MobileTrack” feature, which takes advantage of Apple’s new M7 motion co-processor, provides some of FitBit’s basic activity tracking features right on the device.

The app will track usage data from your iPhone 5S for analysis

This means, however, that the update is only available to iPhone 5S users. They will also be able to try basic features of the app before choosing whether to invest in  Fitbit’s hardware.

The app has also welcomed a number of other new features, including redesigned silent alarms, the ability to a set a custom water goal, and a revamped profile editor, tracker settings, and sign-up screen.

[Via The Verge]


Pyle Audio launches Bluetooth-enabled scales to check your Christmas weight gain

Worried that you might be piling on the pounds a bit too much over Christmas? Dreading the thought of the new year’s resolutions? Well help could be at hand from the latest household connected device.

Say hello to the catchily-named Pyle Bluetooth Fitness Scale. Available now for $59.99 in black, green, orange, pink, or grey, these bathroom scales will link to your smartphone or tablet using Bluetooth. The scales will send information about your weight, body fat percentage, muscle mass and bone mass to your device, which will use this information to tailor workouts accordingly.

The scales will send information to your smartphone or connected device

Pyle (who normally specialise in audio technology, but have recently launched the Pyle Health range) has a Bluetooth-ready app ready to roll which allows users to create profiles and chart their progress. You can even share your results via Twitter or Facebook if you so please.

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Focus TRAINR app looks to turn your smartwatch into a virtual personal trainer

Focus, a newly formed creative start-up, has announced the release of TRAINR, its new app that is aiming to put the power of a personal trainer onto your wrist.

Available now for the Samsung Galaxy Gear and other compatible smartphones, TRAINR is the first fitness app that provides custom training programs while automatically identifying exercises, tracking repetitions, sets and rest periods.

The app works with your wearable device to devise appropriate workouts

With TRAINR, the combination of a wearable device and smartphone evolves into a powerful fitness-training tool, accessible anytime and anywhere, explaining how to train to achieve goals.

While most fitness monitoring devices track only cardiovascular exercise (such as steps and stairs), TRAINR targets users practicing resistance and body weight training by providing top-trainer designed workouts tailored to them.

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Zackees turn-signal cycling gloves include built-in indicators to keep you safe

London has been greatly troubled recently by a number of tragic cyclist accidents resulting in several fatalities, an occurrence which has seemingly grown in the dark winter months. It seems paramount that cyclists need to do their absolute utmost to ensure being seen, and thus being safe.

This is why the new cycling gloves from Zackees could prove to be a life-saving invention. Created by former Google software engineer Zach Vorhies, these gloves do away with traditional hand signals by instead including illuminated turn signals inside.

The gloves provide extra lighting and lets motorists around you know your intentions

Each glove has an array of LEDs embedded in its back, which are powered by two onboard coin cell batteries. Those LEDs form a blinking directional arrow, and are activated simply by touching a pair of metal contacts together – one on the inside of the glove’s thumb, and one on the inside of its index finger.

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Looking for some new years inspiration? Look no further than the Jantastic running challenge

Getting yourself motivated for winter runs is never easy, especially if you’re taking it up for a new year’s fitness regime. However, this might all be about to change, thanks to the Jantastic running challenge.

The Jantastic running challenge is looking to inspire all runners

Created by the organisers of running podcast Marathon Talk and backed by English Athletics and Adidas, Jantastic is a free running challenge which looks to inspire all ages and abilities to start or continue running in 2014. Registration is now open, and over 5,000 people have already signed up. In 2013, the challenge saw more than 125,000 runs and 600,000 miles logged, with a bigger total targeted for 2014.

Launching with a new website, the challenge will see the creation of an online running community which organisers hope will help get people started and running more and faster through the difficult winter months between January and March.

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Magellan Echo smartwatch goes on sale

With the smartwatch market becoming ever more crowded, manufacturers are looking to introduce new and innovative features in order to tempt consumers. A new smartwatch released this week by Santa Clara-based firm Magellen, the Echo, promises to solve one of the biggest problem users encounter when running with a smartphone – viewing and controlling fitness apps while the phone is tucked away.

Echo streams data and controls from your smartphone to your wrist, allowing users to see their distance, pace, and heart rate from fitness apps in realtime.

The Echo is available in a variety of colours, and can also serve as an everyday watch

The device connects to your smartphone via Bluetooth Smart and allows users to control fitness applications through four customizable buttons on its side. However, the obvious downside of this is that, you need to have your phone on you while running to get the most out of the device, unlike standalone fitness watches such as the Adidas miCoach.

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London-based designer shows off ‘running shoes of the future’

The running shoe market has changed so much in the last decade that it would properly be mind-blowing for runners from twenty or thirty years ago to see how far it have developed. But how will shoes evolve and change in the future?

At this week’s Wearable Futures conference, London designer and researcher Shamees Aden demonstrated a concept shoe which shows how he sees the future developing. The shoes, which Aden is developing with University of Southern Denmark professor Martin Hanczyc, are 3D printed from protocells, a synthetic biological material that can repair itself overnight.

Coming to your feet in the near future?

The shoes’ unique construction allows them to be 3D printed to the exact size of the user’s foot, so they would fit like a second skin. While running, the shoes would react to pressure and movement, providing extra cushioning when needed. Continue reading

NHS launches apocalypse-themed fitness app

Getting people involved in exercise is always a challenge, and the NHS has tried a wide variety of tactics to try and get people to be more active. Now they are embracing gamification through the release of a new app, The Walk.

Developed with app-maker Six to Start, who previously made the excellent Zombies, Run!, The Walk encourages players to walk in order to progress through a story and unlock audio clips.

The Walk places characters in an Britain ravaged by a mysterious event

Described as a mix of North By Northwest and The 39 Steps, the game begins with a fictional explosion at Inverness station which knocks out transport and communications networks across the country.

Players then assume the role of a character called Walker, who has to carry a mysterious package the length of the country.

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New Nike smartwatch landing early 2014?

Today’s second piece of Nike news concerns wearable technology – as following the release of the Nike+Sportwatch and Fuelband SE smartwatch in 2013, it seems that the company is gearing up to launch an entirely new smartwatch early next year to compete with Adidas’ MiCoach device.

Occasionally-reliable electronics news site DigiTimes, citing sources along the supply chains in Taiwan, is reporting that early production runs on the wearable computing solution are already taking place at assembly plants run by EMS firm Flextronics International.

Nike’s recent FuelBand SE was well-received – could we be seeing the next generation soon?

This could mean that a Nike smartwatch could be set to go on to be released in the first half of 2014, with early prototypes possibly making an appearance at CES in January or even Mobile World Congress in February in Barcelona.

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Nike introduces LunarElite Sky Hi wedge shoe

Nike has been building up its Lunar shoe range recently following the release of the FlyKnit Lunar +1 shoes back in March, and has this week announced a new model, the  LunarElite Sky Hi.

The LunarElite Sky Hi mixes old and new styles in an innovative wedge shape

Drawing from Nike’s deep heritage in running, the LunarElite Sky Hi mixes Lunarlon cushioning technology with the classic Nike Elite running shoe model from 1976, creating the lightest wedged Nike shoe to date.

This is also the first Nike sneaker with an external wedge, with large perforations and a ventilated neoprene cover providing breathable, sock-less comfort.

Wedge shoes are making a comeback, and Nike is leading the way

The LunarElite Sky Hi will be available exclusively at Net-A-Porter  from this Friday, December 13th.

[Via Nike]